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Justice Prayers - November 15, 2023

May I give no ground to our true enemy, who 
seeks to choke out what is good and beautiful 
and tangle us with hatred and dissent. 
Keep my heart tender, yet strong 
to forgive as you have forgiven me. 
- Every Moment Holy

Updates from Israel-Gaza

President Joe Biden has said that Gaza’s largest hospital “must be protected” and called for “less intrusive action” by Israeli forces. Hundreds of patients, including dozens of babies, remain trapped inside al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, in the north of Gaza, as Israeli troops and Hamas militants take part in heavy fighting outside it. The Israeli military has said it was providing safe corridors for people to escape intense fighting in the north and move south, but Palestinian officials inside Shifa have said the compound was surrounded by constant heavy gunfire. 

Lord God, we stand in direct opposition to violence towards non-combatants and civilians and demand an end to this violence immediately. Ensuring Israel’s safety from terrorists cannot come at the expense of indiscriminate bombing. And Lord, we pray for the captives held by Hamas who so desperately desire a return to their homes and families. Help us find a way where there is no way, God.

‘The science is irrefutable’: US warming faster than global average, says report

The US is warming faster than the global average and its people are suffering “far-reaching and worsening” consequences from the climate crisis, with worse to come, according to an authoritative report issued by the US government. An array of “increasingly harmful impacts” is hitting every corner of the vast country, from extreme heat and sea level rise in Florida to depleted fish stocks and increased food insecurity in Alaska, the new National Climate Assessment has found. While planet-heating US emissions have fallen since peaking in 2007, the reductions are still not enough to meet international targets to avert disastrous climate change, and without deeper cuts in carbon pollution “severe climate risks to the United States will continue to grow”, the report states. “Even if greenhouse gas emissions fall substantially, the impacts of climate change will continue to intensify over the next decade,” the report finds, adding that choices made by the US and other countries will “determine the trajectory of climate change and associated impacts for many generations to come”. Escalating dangers from wildfires, severe heat, flooding and other impacts mean that the US suffers a disaster costing at least $1bn in damages every three weeks now, on average, compared to once every four months in the 1980s.

The science is irrefutable, we read. For the adoption and acceleration of climate solutions, we pray, God. Loving Lord, we pray that you will place on the hearts of every leader the needs of those most vulnerable to climate change, and both the courage and conviction to act swiftly.

Canadian Israeli peace activist Vivian Silver, feared to be held hostage, confirmed killed in Hamas attacks

Vivian Silver, a Canadian Israeli peace activist whose family said they believed was taken hostage from her home in southern Israel when Hamas-led militants carried out a surprise assault on Oct. 7, was killed in the initial attacks, her family confirms. Silver's son, Yonatan Zeigen, confirmed his mother's death, telling CBC News on Monday that the 74-year-old's remains had been found earlier at Kibbutz Be'eri, where she resided, but were only identified now, more than five weeks after the attacks. At least 120 other men, women and children were killed in the community of about 1,100 people located just kilometers from the Israel-Gaza border. The family of Silver, who was born and raised in Winnipeg, initially believed militants had been holding her hostage in Gaza for the past five weeks, along with more than 200 others kidnapped that day. The Israeli government says militants killed about 1,200 people, including civilians and soldiers, in militant raids and rocket attacks on Israeli communities on Oct. 7. The Hamas-run Health Ministry in Gaza reports that more than 11,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli bombardments and ground assaults in the weeks since.

For someone who so desperately sought peaceful coexistence to have lost their life in this way is a tragedy; this whole conflict is a tragedy, and the world is worse off for it. For Silver’s family as they mourn, we pray you might be the one who holds them as they cry, scream, and rage. For resolution and the laying down of arms, we pray, Lord God.

Becoming (part of) the Answer to our Own Prayers

Climate Conversation | Hunting Park Film Series

Join our regional organizers for a special Canadian conversation on our recent storytelling film series, This is Hunting Park . The impacts of environmental injustice are often felt in North American communities that can least afford to cope with the increased heat and hazardous health conditions. One such neighborhood is Hunting Park in Philadelphia. Yet in this community, the hopeful work of faith-based advocacy and community resilience is translating into real change!

On Monday, November 27th, you will have two virtual opportunities to discuss how the stories from Hunting Park can inspire you to step up in your own community for faithful climate action. The first discussion will happen at 7pm EST and the second at 7pm PST.  RSVP Today!

Join Our Giving Tuesday Rescue Mission!

Picture this: a vehicle decides to make a grand entrance, crashing right through the Indigenous Family Center! Thankfully, no kids were in the room for this unexpected visit. But you know who stepped in as the real heroes? Our dedicated Indigenous workers!

This Giving Tuesday, be the hero alongside our incredible team. Your donation ensures we can handle unexpected surprises like this and continue serving our community.

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